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Do all people with fatty liver disease need a liver biopsy?

Joanna Yeh, MD
Pediatric Gastroenterology
Not all people with fatty liver disease need a liver biopsy. A lot of people fall into the category of having fatty liver disease, but if there is just simple steatosis but no inflammation then they will be evaluated and treated, and a liver biopsy will not be needed. However, if advanced scarring or advanced fibrosis is suspected, doctors need to know the extent of liver damage, so a liver biopsy is necessary. Liver biopsy is also useful when doctors are not 100 percent sure of the diagnosis of fatty liver disease and need to rule out other causes of liver disease.

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